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Home » Business News

Essential Living comments on new Labour policy paper on the housing crisis and PRS…

Submitted by on May 13, 2013 – 9:43 am |

Scott Hammond -  Executive Director of Essential LivingThe Labour Policy Commission has published a paper, ‘The Housing Crisis: House building and a private rented sector (PRS) that works for Britain’s families’, which lays out a number of suggestions the Labour Party feel would lead to increased house building and improve the housing crisis.

The paper presents two options to increase building in the UK:

Make changes to the planning system to increase incentives on developers to build more homes.

Avoid changes to the planning system because this could risk creating uncertainty for developers.

On the PRS, the paper expresses concern over rogue landlords providing poor quality homes and a lack of security of tenure for families. They propose two options to improve the PRS:

Explore expanding voluntary accreditation schemes for letting agents.

Voluntary accreditation schemes have failed and Labour should assess the different models of regulating letting agents.

Scott Hammond, Executive Director of Essential Living, commented:

“We welcome today’s report and agree that growing demand for rented homes means we need serious thought around making development more viable. From an investment point of view, certainty is everything but ensuring schemes are viable is also vital.

“The fact that agents – who handle tens of thousands of pounds of landlords’ and tenants’ cash – remain unregulated is astounding, and does indeed need to be addressed.

“Ultimately, we do need to consider a planning approach recognising the fact that rental developers will take a long term interest in communities by reducing development levies. Renting by its very nature if more affordable than buying and we must do everything we can to enhance quality if we are serious about supporting growth.”

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